Friday, February 6, 2015

Google, Microsoft and Amazon will pay Adblock Plus to get their ads unblocked


Adblock Plus would be receiving “30% of the additional ad revenues” from Google, Microsoft and Amazon just to unblock ads. Adblock Plus blocks annoying ads on the web which includes blocking the “tracking” as well. Hence, with a count of monthly 50 million active users across the world its one of the most popular browser extensions. Adblock Plus itself has no functionality, in the sense that it does not block anything until it is “told” what to do by its filter lists. Adblock Plus is an open source project created by Wladimir Palant in 2006. EYEO, a German Company, was founded in 2011 by Wladimir Palant and Till Faida to make Adblock development sustainable. Adblock Plus offers free service and claims to block the “annoying” banners, pop-ups and video ads. In order to block all the ads, Adblock users can get all the ads blocked by configuring the software settings option to strictest options possible. However, Ad blocking is an existential threat to internet services and tech firms who rely on advertising for the majority of their revenues. Adblock Plus also feels that not all the ads are bad and that that website owners need them to survive and places these type of sites under the criteria of “Acceptable Ads” as long as they are being transparent about the fact that they are advertising, and “do not disrupt or distort” page content. The Acceptable Ads are under the “White List” criteria which the Adblock users can still block if they want to. The main hitch is that this white list is free for smaller sites and the bigger companies like Google, Microsoft, Amazon and Taboola are being asked to pay a fee which is equivalent to 30% of the additional revenues it would make from the advertisement if they were not blocked the Adblock Plus browser plugin. As per the Eyeo spokesman Ben Williams, this “Acceptable Ads” initiative has been there since 2011 when the company was founded and it is as transparent as possible. He also added that in the White List 90% of the entities in accceptable ads are free for payers and non payers while the users still have the option to completely block all the ads. It still remains a big question if the larger companies like Google, Microsoft, Amazon will pay this huge amount to Adblock Plus just to get their ads unblocked which eventually is upto the users as they still have the option to block these ads, anyways. However going by the reports, Adblock Plus owners are certainly going to laugh all their way to the bank.

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